The American debut CD by Russian vocalist/actress Natalia Nazarova takes a rather novel approach in that the singer pursues pop, smooth jazz and straight-ahead jazz in both English and Russian languages. Accompanied by 30 of Chicago's finest musicians, Natalia certainly grabs the listener's attention.
Orbert Davis is a truly talented horn player and arranger from the Windy City. His flugelhorn and trumpet solo work on this recording is nothing less than captivating. Equally enticing is the superb piano artistry of Ryan Cohan and the bassist James Cammack. Luckily, we are treated to a plethora of solos by these outstanding players. Ms. Nazarova exhibits a good command of the English language and a tremendous sense of humor on "Simple Lies" where she enters a very funny interplay with Orbert Davis. Davis is capable of the same humorous techniques as the veteran, Clark Terry.
Strangely, the mix of styles and languages are not distracting in the least. Some of the English tracks are repeated in Russian with very interesting results. "The Winds of Life" is performed in Russian with some very exciting "scat singing" by Natalia.
We are treated to an instrumental bonus track in the form of "A Love That's Over" written by Orbert Davis and Mark Ingram. On this track, the small group is augmented by Davis Jones on flute.
If you like the unusual, get down to your favorite CD shop and give it a listen. This session is a truly refreshing experience. Top marks for originality!